TechShop Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Garage for Hobbyists of All Levels Menlo Park "Maker-Space" Soon to Open SF Location in 2010

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Jim Newton needed more space and tools than he owned in order to build his many ideas. Rather than scrap his ideas, Newton opened TechShop, the ultimate Silicon Valley do-it-yourself garage for hobbyists, tech geeks, inventors and entrepreneurs who want to make things but lack the tools, space or skills. Newton's 15,000 square-foot, membership-based studio is like a fitness club for builders, offering the machines and instruction for people of all skill levels to complete projects.

Jim Newton needed more space and tools than he owned in order to build his many ideas. Rather than scrap his ideas, Newton opened TechShop, the ultimate Silicon Valley do-it-yourself garage for hobbyists, tech geeks, inventors and entrepreneurs who want to make things but lack the tools, space or skills. Newton's 15,000 square-foot, membership-based studio is like a fitness club for builders, offering the machines and instruction for people of all skill levels to complete projects.

"I just needed a place to create my ideas. I didn't realize at the time that building TechShop might be my biggest idea of all," said Newton. Since opening TechShop in Menlo Park in October 2006, Newton was named one of Forbes Magazine's "Eight People Inventing the Future."

TechShop is a metal, plastic, wood, electronics, and textile creative workshop designed to attract a collaborative community of makers. Members - some of whom have never made anything - bring the ideas and desire to create; TechShop provides the machinery, instruction and tools to make just about anything imaginable, from etched chocolate bars to dirt-digging, moon-traversing robots, and much more. TechShop offers access to an unmatched set of machines and tools, including welding stations and a plasma cutter, drill presses and band saws, milling machines and lathes, laser cutters, industrial sewing machines, CNC computer-controlled routers, vacuum forming equipment, an injection molder, and even a 3D Scanner and 3D printer. Just one of these machines can cost an individual as much as $25,000 - and then there is the matter of learning how to use them safely.

A broad array of more than 40 in-depth classes from silk-screening to welding are also offered to members and guests. TechShop's Safety and Basic Usage (SBU) courses teach students how to use the many tools, machines and pieces of equipment.

Currently, TechShop has about 600 members, many who have launched businesses and created new jobs, built prototypes, secured venture capital and grants, and patented their ideas.

"There are an incredible amount of resources here that I can use without having to go out and purchase them and get my own facility to house them," Bob Lipp, COO of Clustered Systems recently said, "… and the people around here help me figure stuff out when I have questions."

By popular demand, TechShop is scheduled to open a new 15,500 square-foot studio in downtown San Francisco early this summer. Located at 926 Howard Street, TechShop SF is the anchor for an exciting creative cluster of local businesses moving into the South of Market Street (SOMA) area.

To find out how to get involved as a member, learn more about TechShop and check out the course offerings, visit http://www.techshop.ws, call (800) 640-1975 or see us at the Maker Faire May 22/23 at the San Mateo fair grounds. You can also follow Jim Newton at "TechShopJim" on Twitter.

About TechShop, Inc.

Founded in October 2006, TechShop, Inc. is the leading membership-based do-it-yourself workshop ("Maker Space"), providing access to tools and equipment, instruction and a creative community for the public to build most anything. TechShop has something for everyone, from bead making, textile work and laser cutting machines, to welding, machine shop equipment and robot development. Based in Menlo Park, CA, with a location in Raleigh, NC, TechShop is expanding to include a San Francisco location in summer 2010. For information and course listings, visit http://www.techshop.ws, or call (800) 640-1975.

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KAREN MONROE
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